Schlagwort-Archive: Diversity

Building blocks of a value-adding whole

Aristotle already had in his metaphysics, more than two thousand years ago, the right intuition – The whole is more than the sum of its parts. However, the Cartesian perspective has broken the world down into its components for centuries, thereby obscuring the look at the holistic possibilities. Despite the encouraging experiences of companies like 3M or W. L. Gore & Associates GmbH, large corporations struggle to rethink. Aligning collaboration based on the needs of the employees and creating a more fruitful whole through with the resulting engagement is the ultimate purpose. The inability to leverage these strengths can only be explained by the inertia of the responsible managers. They are unsure how it will go on for them when the bureaucratic regulations, permanent surveillance, and excessive news dissemination are no longer needed, and they become obsolete. The brave are already trying agility in various forms – agile enterprise, agile organization, agile employees, agile managers, agile culture, agile mindset, agile project management, and agile product development, simply agile hodgepodge.

The following building blocks promote productive wholeness.

  • Positive diversity
    In a VUKA world, the components found on different levels influence each other mutually. To react appropriately, i.e., to act at the right place and, above all, on time, other capabilities take center stage. Ashby’s law of required variety has clarified that the greater the variety of acts of a system controlling others, the better it can compensate for disturbances. This means that the remaining managers and employees must be more diverse in their traits, behavior, and means than the tasks and the competition. The difference is created by:
    –  a wider range of skills (e.g., besides technical, also social and systemic capabilities),
    –  an extra commitment of all,
    –  extended perseverance,
    –  the restriction to tasks that are needed,
    –  the interaction in the team, and
    –  a strong sense of responsibility.
    The losers are all those who continue to worship lockstep and only add skills that already exist in the company.
  • Leadership style without leadership
    The new style replaces leadership with fostering. The most significant burden for a company is a legacy structure, whose decision-making and reporting paths are unnecessarily long, diluting resolutions and slowing the speed. Leaving the choice to employees at the point of action creates a momentum that the usual leadership cannot match. At the same time, the open work style provides employees with a common direction and security. Influence then no longer comes from a formally established position but trust and contagious enthusiasm.
  • Entrepreneurs in the company
    The days of economic officialdom are coming to an end. The new understanding of leadership works through entrepreneurial action. The employees can no longer pull back from solving a given task but must behave like they owned the company. They have, as a result, more risks. On the one hand, a large company offers the danger of unintentional mishaps and losses, but on the other hand, these are more than offset by surprising gains. Even if individual units can fulfill their tasks more flexibly, the whole remains a large fleet that works together because of its joint alignment.
  • The energy is in each personality
    Everything that happens originates in the minds of individual employees. If the human image of the Theory Y is adopted by the leaders, they can bring their experiences and abilities to effect. Together, they experience adventures that expand their mental models with new insights. With a shared vision, ideas emerge that are no longer predetermined but are jointly elaborated and move the company forward. Combined with the personal drive fueled by shared momentum, the fitness evolves that secures the business.

Bottom line: It is not a question of the size of your company whether it has to take care of the new leadership beyond agility, but when. Change is happening no matter what. And if you are already suffering from the feeling that you should be taking more care of your employees, or that cost pressure is melting your margins, or that the economic climate is threatening you, then the right moment has come to act. Should you have done it earlier? This question is useless because you cannot turn back time. The positive diversity, the leadership style without leadership, the entrepreneurs in the company, and the use of the existing personalities are building blocks that already take you extremely far. You only need to activate your most vital advantage now – namely the whole that is jointly generated with everybody and brings more than the tayloristic waste through the old-fashioned bureaucracy.

The kick in the so-called – the ideal metaphor for a disturbance

The outcome of decades of standardization is bureaucracy in all areas. This is manifested in regulations that are supposed to prevent the misconduct of a vanishing minority. However, all employees and decision-makers are affected and are thus deprived of any scope for action. The result is an even distribution of inactivity within the area. This organizational rigidity is only prevented by disturbances – such as a kick in the so-called.

Preposterously, those responsible avert/-void disruptions like the devil the holy water. In doing so, they overlook that they thereby create an equilibrium of immovableness by punishing the one who moves first. The only way to escape this vicious circle is to stir up the action, for example, through disruptions.

  • It takes more than one
    People are driven by their motives. The result is several, often different interests in one group. The whole expands thereby its possibilities – as long as the individual interests are not held back. This is an important reason to always include several people in the team, even if one nevertheless takes the lead – responsibility is not sharable according to the Highlander principle.
  • Ensure diversity
    The more diverse the participants, the more varying are the suggestions. Exclusion no longer offers those die-hards the self-protection that like-minded people provided. On the contrary, it is business suicide to strive for homogeneity of opinions because mutual backslapping increases entropy. Other views are not seen, and the opportunities for diversity are not exploited, leading to homemade failure. Ensure your employees cover diverse genders, ages, worldviews, and operational functions, and take advantage of diverse perspectives.
  • Appreciate surprises
    In the past, one of the worst misconducts was not having avoided surprises. The extent to which an unexpected circumstance was foreseeable or not, did not matter. You were accused of covering up bad news, of not having confidence, or at least of not enough covering up your bets to be able to report changes early on. For you, it is critical to build an open-minded error culture that forgives mistakes and perceives them as learning opportunities and build the skills to see trouble coming – e.g., through proactive stakeholder management.
  • Rethink feedback
    Avoiding the exchange of ideas, sketches, concepts, and results is natural self-protection to safeguard oneself from criticism. This stumbling block is a crazy mindset that assumes that others are opponents, complaints are meant to harm you, and that your fulfillment of tasks will be disrupted as a result. You should do everything to be able to use these opportunities easier. Values and rules help thereby for exchanging good feedback. Feedback from others should be clear, factual, non-judgmental, exchanged promptly and privately without toxic feedback on feedback.
  • Disorder is the intermediate goal
    Remember, the goal is to maintain creative chaos that prevents participants from sinking into inertia. The ultimate results should be as free of clutter as possible and deliver customers the output that they paid for – not excessively more, certainly not less. The intermediate goal is a work product that serves to ameliorate. As a leader, you are the deciding factor. On the one hand, you must ensure fruitful disorder by assuming the role of Advocatus Diaboli, if necessary, to disrupt fatigue among those involved. Above all, you must endure the created disorder and resist the impulse of a micromanager to interfere in the employee’s activities.

Bottom line: Contrary to the preconception that disorder is a bad thing, leaders should learn to harness the power of other, sometimes contradictory, opinions. Power seekers suppress any engagement from people who think differently than they do. This no longer fits into an age in which everything is in rapid motion. It is better to uncover and react to counterarguments within the team than to be accused for them later when everything is already moving in the wrong direction. For this reason, it always takes more than one to solve tasks. Work teams should be as diverse as possible in every respect, as this allows different views and weaknesses to be grasped more quickly. If surprises still happen, then this is the earliest time to locate difficulty and take countermeasures. To exchange opinions smoothly, an open feedback culture is needed. The many intermediate results become mature for discourse through the above measures. Eventually, the customer deliverable should be shaped at best and backed by all. A disturbance shakes up the lethargy of a harmony-cluttered workgroup like a kick in the so-called. This makes it the ideal metaphor for a disturbance.